US President Donald Trump has appeared to undercut his own intelligence agencies by suggesting he has seen evidence coronavirus originated in a Chinese laboratory.
Earlier the US national intelligence director’s office said it was still investigating how the virus began.
But the office said it had determined Covid-19 “was not manmade or genetically modified”.
China has rejected the lab theory and criticised the US response to Covid-19.
Since emerging in China last year, the virus has killed 230,000 people worldwide including 63,000 in the US.
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The pandemic has seen at least 3.2 million people infected, a million of them Americans, since the virus spread from the city of Wuhan.
At the White House on, Mr Trump was asked by a reporter: “Have you seen anything at this point that gives you a high degree of confidence that the Wuhan Institute of Virology was the origin of this virus?”
“Yes, I have. Yes, I have,” said the president, without specifying. “And I think the World Health Organization [WHO] should be ashamed of themselves because they’re like the public relations agency for China.”
Asked later to clarify his comment, he said: “I can’t tell you that. I’m not allowed to tell you that.”
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